NBA Playoffs Schedule 2021: Dates, times, odds, where to watch


We are down to a Final Four in the NBA — and it’s not the final four anyone predicted. Upsets and young stars proving they are ready for the big stage have made these a playoffs to remember.

The NBA postseason heads into its Conference Finals series.

Here is the 2021 NBA playoffs schedule (all times are Eastern), with odds courtesy our partner PointsBet:



Phoenix Suns (2) vs. Los Angeles Clippers (4)

Game 1: Phoenix 120, L.A. Clippers 114
Game 2: Phoenix 104, L.A. Clippers 103
Game 3: L.A. Clippers 106, Phoenix 92
Game 4: Phoenix 84, L.A. Clippers 80
Game 5: L.A. Clippers 116, Phoenix 102 
Game 6: Phoenix 130, L.A. Clippers 103 (Suns win series 4-2)


Milwaukee Bucks (3) vs. Atlanta Hawks (5)

Game 1: Atlanta 116, Milwaukee 113
Game 2: Milwaukee 125, Atlanta 91
Game 3: Milwaukee 113, Atlanta 102
Game 4: Atlanta 110, Milwaukee 89
Game 5: Milwaukee 123, Atlanta 112 (Bucks lead series 3-2)
Saturday, July 3 at Atlanta, 8:30 p.m., (TNT) [Hawks -2]
Monday, July 5 at Milwaukee, 8:30 p.m., (TNT)*
*if necessary



Philadelphia 76ers (1) vs. Atlanta Hawks (5)

Game 1: Atlanta 128, Philadelphia 124
Game 2: Philadelphia 118, Atlanta 102
Game 3: Philadelphia 127, Atlanta 111
Game 4: Atlanta 103, Philadelphia 100
Game 5: Atlanta 109, Philadelphia 106
Game 6: Philadelphia 104, Atlanta 99
Game 7: Atlanta 103, Philadephia 96 (Hawks win series 4-3)

Brooklynn Nets (2) vs. Milwaukee Bucks (3)

Game 1: Brooklyn 115, Milwaukee 107
Game 2: Brooklyn 125, Milwaukee 86
Game 3: Milwaukee 86, Brooklyn 83
Game 4: Milwaukee 107, Brooklyn 96
Game 5: Brooklyn 114, Milwaukee 108
Game 6: Milwaukee 104, Brooklyn 89
Game 7: Milwaukee 111, Brooklyn 105 OT (Bucks win series 4-3)


Phoenix Suns (2) vs. Denver Nuggets (3)

Game 1: Phoenix 122, Denver 105
Game 2: Phoenix 123, Denver 98
Game 3: Phoenix 116, Denver 102
Game 4: Phoenix 123, Denver 118 (Suns win series 4-0)

Utah Jazz (1) vs. L.A. Clippers (4)

Game 1: Utah 112, L.A. Clippers 109
Game 2: Utah 117, L.A. Clippers 111
Game 3: L.A. Clippers 132, Utah 106
Game 4: L.A. Clippers 118, Utah 104
Game 5: L.A. Clippers 119, Utah 111
Game 6: L.A. Clippers 131, Utah 119 (Clippers win series 4-2)



Philadelphia 76ers (1) vs. Washington Wizards (8)

Game 1: Philadelphia 125, Washington 118
Game 2: Philadelphia 120, Washington 95
Game 3: Philadelphia 132, Washington 103
Game 4: Washington 122, Philadelphia 114
Game 5: Philadelphia 129, Washington 111 (76ers win series 4-1)

Brooklyn Nets (2) vs. Boston Celtics (7)

Game 1: Brooklyn 104, Boston 93
Game 2: Brooklyn 130, Boston 108
Game 3: Boston 125, Brooklyn 119
Game 4: Brooklyn 141, Boston 126
Game 5: Brooklyn 123, Boston 109 (Nets win series 4-1)

Milwaukee Bucks (3) vs. Miami Heat (6)

Game 1: Milwaukee 109, Miami 107 OT
Game 2: Milwaukee 132, Miami 98
Game 3: Milwaukee 113, Miami 84
Game 4: Milwaukee 120, Miami 103 (Bucks win series 4-0)

New York Knicks (4) vs. Atlanta Hawks (5)

Game 1: Atlanta 107, New York 105
Game 2: New York 101, Atlanta 92
Game 3: Atlanta 105, New York 94
Game 4: Atlanta 113, New York 96
Game 5: Atlanta 103, New York 89 (Hawks win series 4-1)


Utah Jazz (1) vs. Memphis Grizzlies (8)

Game 1: Memphis 112, Utah 109
Game 2: Utah 141, Memphis 129
Game 3: Utah 121, Memphis 111
Game 4: Utah 120, Memphis 113
Game 5: Utah 126, Memphis 110 (Jazz win series 4-1)

Phoenix Suns (2) vs. Los Angeles Lakers (7)

Game 1: Phoenix 99, L.A. Lakers 100
Game 2: L.A. Lakers 109, Phoenix 102
Game 3: L.A. Lakers 109, Phoenix 95
Game 4: Phoenix 100, L.A. Lakers 92
Game 5: Phoenix 115, L.A. Lakers 85
Game 6: Phoenix 113, L.A. Lakers 100 (Suns win series 4-2)

Denver Nuggets (3) vs. Portland Trail Blazers (6)

Game 1: Portland 123, Denver 109
Game 2: Denver 128, Portland 109
Game 3: Denver 120, Portland 115
Game 4: Portland 115, Denver 95
Game 5: Denver 147, Portland 140 (2OT)
Game 6: Denver 126, Portland 115 (Nuggets win series 4-2)

Los Angeles Clippers (4) vs. Dallas Mavericks (5)

Game 1: Dallas 113, L.A. Clippers 103
Game 2: Dallas 127, L.A, Clippers 121
Game 3: L.A. Clippers 118, Dallas 108
Game 4: L.A. Clippers 106, Dallas 81
Game 5: Dallas 105, L.A. Clippers 100
Game 6: L.A. Clippers 104, Dallas 97
Game 7: L.A. Clippers 126, Dallas 111 (Clippers win series 4-3)

PointsBet is our Official Sports Betting Partner and we may receive compensation if you place a bet on PointsBet for the first time after clicking our links.

Add Jaren Jackson Jr., Brandon Ingram to USA World Cup roster

Memphis Grizzlies v Golden State Warriors
Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images

The Team USA roster heading Manilla for the World Cup this summer just gets deeper and more athletic.

Two more players have committed to playing: Defensive Player of the Year Jaren Jackson Jr. and the Pelicans scoring machine Brandon Ingram, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

We now have eight of the 12 players expected to represent the USA this summer:

Mikal Bridges
Jalen Brunson
Anthony Edwards
Tyrese Haliburton
Brandon Ingram
Jaren Jackson Jr.
Bobby Portis
Austin Reaves

Jackson Jr. brings rim-protecting defense plus the ability to space the floor needed by bigs in the international game. Ingram fits the style of scorer — from Kevin Durant back to Carmelo Anthony — that has always done well for Team USA in international competitions. Ingram averaged 24.7 points per game this season, but missed almost half the season due to a toe injury.

The World Cup takes place this summer in the Philippines, Japan and Indonesia, feating 32 teams from around the world. The USA is in Group C with Greece, New Zealand and Jordan. The World Cup is the primary qualifier for the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Warriors coach Steve Kerr is in charge of Team USA, with his assistant coaches being Erik Spoelstra (Heat), Tyronn Lue (Clippers) and Mark Few (Gonzaga).

The USA will have a training camp in Las Vegas, where they play Puerto Rico in an exhibition before heading to Abu Dhabi and then on to the World Cup, where the USA will play all its games in Manilla.

The World Cup starts Aug. 25 and continues through Sept. 10.


Coaching, front office updates: Sam Cassell headed to Celtics’ bench

2023 NBA Playoffs - Philadelphia 76ers v Boston Celtics
Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

The musical chairs in NBA coaching and front office circles continues at full speed during the NBA Finals.

We’ve done a couple of notebook-style updates. Here’s another:

• Sam Cassell is headed to Boston to be one of the new key assistants for Joe Mazzulla with the Celtics, a story broken by Shams Charania of The Athletic and confirmed by Chris Forsberg at NBC Sports Boston. Cassell had been on Doc Rivers’ bench in Philadelphia the past few seasons and the Los Angeles Clippers before that. This is as close to bringing in a head coach as you can get without hiring a former head coach, plus he had a 15-year NBA career players’ respect.

Cassell can also teach the players a dance that can get them fined.

Marc Stein reports that the Mavericks are testing the waters to see if former Knicks head coach turned lead broadcaster for ABC/ESPN Jeff Van Gundy — who is currently working the NBA Finals — might want to return to the bench on Jason Kidd’s staff. That seems an incredible long shot, but it never hurts to ask.

• If they can’t get Van Gundy, the Mavericks may turn to former Suns head coach Jeff Hornacek, Stein reports.

• Stein also reports these are the four finalists for the still-open Toronto Raptors head coaching job: Kenny Atkinson (former Nets head coach who is on Steve Kerr’s staff in Golden State), Jordi Fernández (Kings lead assistant), Darko Rajaković (Grizzlies assistant coach) and Sergio Scariolo (Italy’s Virtus Bologna and the Spanish national team head coach). Scariolo will not fly to Toronto for another interview because Virtus Bologna starts the Italian league finals this week.

• Former Rockets head coach Stephen Silas will join the staff of Monty Williams in Detroit as an assistant coach, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.

• As expected, the Los Angeles Clippers have promoted from within to replace former GM Michael Winger, who left to become the head of Wizards basketball operations.

The Clippers are considered one of the league’s smarter and more stable front offices, one built on collaboration, so it makes sense to promote from within.

Kyrie Irving reportedly reaches out to LeBron about joining Mavericks… good luck with that

Celebrities At The Los Angeles Lakers Game
Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

The NBA’s silly season started during the NBA Finals.

Kyrie Irving has reached out to LeBron James about coming to Dallas and has pushed the Mavericks into looking to acquire LeBron via trade, according to reports from Shams Charania of The Athletic and Chris Haynes of Bleacher Report/TNT.

There is no shortage of rumors around the league about Irving and LeBron appearing to warm to the idea of playing together again. That was fueled by Irving being courtside at multiple Lakers playoff games.

There are so many problems with and obstacles to this LeBron in Dallas idea I’ll need to go to bullet points to break them down.

• This was either a tactical leak from the Irving camp to try and make this happen, or, it was a tactical leak by LeBron and Irving to put pressure on the Lakers to bring Irving to Los Angeles this summer. I’m not going to pretend to know Charania’s and Haynes’ sources, but nobody else benefits from this coordinated leak. If it did come from the Irving camp in any way, that’s pretty rich considering days ago he scolded anyone listening to sources and not what he says.

• The Lakers, for their part, are focused on running it back with players such as Austin Reaves and Rui Hachimura and have shown limited if any interest in pursuing a sign-and-trade to land Irving. Dallas has no interest in a sign-and-trade that brings them D'Angelo Russell back. The Lakers bringing in Irving remains an incredible long shot.

• LeBron was not trade eligible at the last trade deadline after signing an off-season extension. Maybe the report was intended to mean Dallas was going to make an offer for a LeBron trade this offseason (before the Lakers run to the Western Conference Finals), but the Lakers could not have traded LeBron at the deadline, even if he wanted it.

• Making a LeBron to Dallas trade come together under the much harsher terms for big spending teams in the new CBA is next to impossible, something Haynes talks about in his story. Luka Dončić is already on the books for $40 million next season, and LeBron will make $46.9 million (plus he has a $50.6 million player option for 2024-25). If you pair those two and pay Irving anywhere near the salary he wants, the Mavericks would be right up against the salary cap with no way to fill out the roster except for minimum contracts. Wasn’t LeBron just on a team that gutted its depth for a third star?

• Along those same lines, if the Lakers sign-and-trade for Irving to put next to LeBron and Anthony Davis, they will have no cap room to round out a contending roster and it would look like the Lakers of a couple of seasons ago, with Irving in the Russell Westbrook role.

• Haynes suggested the numbers work for Dallas if LeBron forces a buyout with the Lakers and then signs in Dallas at a reduced salary. Does anyone think LeBron would even consider that for more than a second?

• If Irving is willing to take a massive discount and play for closer to the mid-level exception things fit a little better, but Irving has shown no interest in doing that. Remember he opted in with the Nets rather than leave to play for less, then pushed for a trade when Brooklyn would not give him the extension he wanted.

• There is no motivation for the Lakers to play along with this and there is no trade the Mavericks can put together that would interest Los Angeles. Technically the numbers work if Dallas trades Davis Bertans, Tim Hardaway Jr. and Maxi Kleber to Los Angeles, but why would the Lakers even consider it? The Lakers have traded almost all their draft picks and put all their energy into building a winner around LeBron and Anthony Davis, they are not trading the guy that fills their building for three rotation players. It would not matter what or how many picks were involved.

• Does LeBron James want to leave his family in Los Angeles, and playing literally down the street from his son Bronny at USC next season, to play for the Mavericks? Especially when they have to gut the roster to get him? If this season goes sideways for the Lakers maybe he feels differently about finishing his career somewhere else, but it’s hard to see right now.

Adam Silver said he would not release the update on the Ja Morant investigation right now because he didn’t want to distract from the NBA Finals. I would have paid good money to see his face when he saw this news.

From Santa Barbara to G-League to NBA Finals star, Gabe Vincent epitomizes Heat

2023 NBA Finals - Miami Heat v Denver Nuggets
Nathaniel S. Butler/NBAE via Getty Images

DENVER — Bam Adebayo had been a teammate of Gabe Vincent in the bubble and through much of the 2020-21 season (all while Vincent was on a two-way contract with the Heat), but the first time he realized just how good his teammate could be was when Adebayo had to go against him.

“Man, when he torched us in the Olympics, in the exhibition game facing Nigeria,” said Adebayo, who would go on to win gold with the USA in Tokyo. “He came out with that type of energy, that type of voracity and that type of anger. I felt like, from there, he’s one of us.”

Gabe Nnamdi — who uses that name of his ancestry when he represents Nigeria — scored a team-high 21 points against the best the USA had to offer in an exhibition game where Nigeria upset Team USA and sent tremors through the basketball world. It was a breakout moment for Vincent.

That energy and veracity were back in Game 2 of the NBA Finals, when Vincent dropped a team-high 23 points on 8-of-12 shooting and 4-of-6 from beyond the arc, leading the Heat to a Game 2 victory. Vincent was the guy getting pulled onto the NBA TV set with Charles Barkley and Shaq.

Vincent’s personal arc to get to that moment may be the embodiment of a Heat player and their team culture.

“I would say that old saying that we use a lot: People severely overestimate what you can get accomplished in a day, and they grossly underestimate what you can get accomplished in a matter of months, years, when nobody is paying attention,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said to describe Vincent’s path. “And he’s the epitome of that.”

Vincent played four years of college basketball at idyllic UC Santa Barbara, where he was a standout for the Gauchos — Big West Freshman of the Year in 2015, and made an All-Big West team his senior year — but he went undrafted and found himself in the G-League with the Stockton Kings. There he played for two seasons, earned the Most Improved Player award, and caught the eye of the Heat front office, who, in January 2020 signed him to a two-way deal.

Vincent’s transformation as a player was just beginning. Vincent had played up to that point as more of an undersized scoring two-guard, but the Heat had other ideas.

“He was a gunslinger, two-guard. We wanted to develop him into a combo guard, somebody that could organize us, be an irritant defensively, tough, learn how to facilitate and run a team,” Spoelstra said. “I think that’s the toughest thing to do in this league, is turn a two into a one. He openly just embraced that. Then he struggled at times with that because you’re trying to reinvent yourself. Instead of saying, This is too tough, let me be me, he’s really grown the last three years.”

“It definitely wasn’t easy,” Vincent said of the transformation of his game. “The staff was great with me, whether it was film or getting in the gym, and my teammates have been phenomenal, coaching me up, telling me to be more aggressive when I’m questioning it or trying to think, should I pass first.

“And our stars, Jimmy, Kyle, Bam, they have just been in my ear and telling me just to play, play basketball. They trust my IQ of the game, and they want me just to go out there and play hard.”

As his game transformed, the Heat signed him in August of 2021 to a two-year minimum deal. He just kept getting better and outplaying that deal.

Vincent was coming off the bench for the Heat to start the season behind Kyle Lowry, but as Vincent’s game grew and Father Time seemed to be winning the race with Lowry, their roles switched. In February he moved into the starting lineup and hasn’t looked back.

“I know the level of confidence that we have in him and that he has in himself to go out there and run the offense at any point in time, first through fourth quarter, maybe even overtime,” Jimmy Butler said of Vincent. “And we live with the decisions and the shots that he makes and takes, and he’s our starting PG for a reason.”

Through the playoffs, Vincent has averaged 13.9 points a game shooting 41.3% from 3, plus dishing out 3.9 assists a game. On Sunday night he was the highest-scoring player on his team in an NBA Finals game.

It’s a long journey from Isla Vista in Santa Barbara to the NBA’s biggest stage.

And it will get him paid — Vincent is an unrestricted free agent this summer who will land an eight-figure-a-year contract. That’s likely with the Heat, who want to retain him, but his playoff performance will have teams looking for two-way ball-handling guards — Orlando, San Antonio, and plenty of others — calling. Vincent will have options.

“He’s just an incredible winning player,” Spoelstra said of him. “This year, he’s been a starter for us. He’s been great. He’s off the bench, he’s been great. He’s like a lot of our guys, the competitive spirit. You get challenged like we’re getting challenged in this series, you hope it brings out the best in you. And that’s what it’s doing with him.”

Adebayo saw that potential when Vincent was challenged in a Las Vegas exhibition game a couple of years ago. Now he’s happy Vincent is on his team and not the opposition.